Monday, June 30, 2014

Painted Star Cookies

Happy 4th of July week!  I can't believe June has come and gone already.  Why does summer go by way to fast?  I'm excited to be sharing this post and participating in's 4th of July Celebration! (PS - has an exchange program to buy and sell gift cards, if you haven't already checked it out, I encourage you to do so!)  But back to this delicious (and easy!) recipe!
I love celebrating the 4th of July!  Even though my husband has to work, we still make it a good day.  We always have our friends over for a badminton tournament in-between my husband's morning set up, and having to go back to work for the concert.  We love to play badminton with our friends and we always have lots of good things to eat and grill and have our own early cookout.  Of course, I have to make dessert :)  Usually I make a cake, but sometimes cookies are good for sweet treats on the go!

I found these cookies when I was searching for a recipe to use an egg yolk.  (Let me tell you, it was a long search!).  When I make sugar cookie bars, they need one egg and one egg white.  What to do with the leftover yolk?  I have been on the hunt for recipes that use just one egg  yolk.  This is one that I came across that I think I will be making a lot more in the future - super duper easy and gives the impression of frosted cookies without all the work!
What do you do with your family to celebrate the 4th of July?

Painted Star Cookies
Recipe Adapted from Gwenny Penny

  • 3/4 cup Crisco/shortening
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 2½ cups flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 egg yolk
To begin, cream together the shortening, sugar, eggs, and vanilla.  Slowly blend in the flour, baking powder, and salt.  Chill dough for at least an hour.
Once dough has chilled, roll out on a floured surface and cut with cookie cutters.  Aim for about 1/4 inch thick.  Place cookies on ungreased baking sheet (or baking sheets covered with silicone mats - I love 'em!).

 Now for the fun part - decorating!  Do this before baking!  Mix one egg yolk with 1/4 tsp water.  Separate the mixture into small bowls and color with food coloring - I used gel food coloring for a richer color. Once you have reached your desired color, take a paintbrush and paint the egg yolk onto the unbaked cookies.  I just used paintbrushes from the kids section at the craft store that I got for a dollar. 

Once decorated, bake at 400 degrees for six minutes.  Don't over bake!  And bam!  You have decorated cookies, that you don't have to frost after baking - love simple recipes like this!

Happy 4th of July!

<-- Click for nutritional info and a printer friendly version

Linking up at some of these great parties!

Friday, June 20, 2014


I'm late to the game with #100happydays I know!  However, I saw that The Questionable Homesteader was restarting the challenge, I thought maybe I would participate too.  I don't currently have a smartphone, so participating on Facebook the way everyone else was would not work for me - but posting pictures on the blog every week or so sure would :)

So's here's my first few pictures.  Happy Day everyone!

Day 1 (6/16) - Strawberry season started today! I can't wait for my husband to get home so I can surprise him with this strawberry-y goodness.  Love fresh picked strawberries!

Day 2 - Canoeing for the first time this year, my parents came along too!
Day 3 - More rain - but I think the birds are enjoying the birdbath at the end of our drive way.  Right before I took the picture, three more were there splashing and playing.

Day 4 - Our power was out from about 4 am till noon.  I was bored... but productive and got my desk all cleaned up!

Day 5 - It finally stopped raining long enough to do some laundry!

Monday, June 16, 2014


I love expanding my cooking repertoire and lately I've been looking at making some favorites from scratch, rather than from a box or a mix.  Enter cornbread.  Corn muffins were definitely a favorite in my family growing up.  My dad and brother and I would often scramble to grab as many muffins as we could when they were hot out of the oven. 

We always used a box to make our cornbread muffins and I'd never made any from scratch.  Recently, I decided I wanted to change that, when I had a craving for cornbread.  This recipe turned out really nice (though would probably work better when we have company - an 8x8 pan was definitely too much for my husband and I to share! However, the leftovers were also delicious when warmed up in the microwave for 15 seconds).

Homemade Cornbread
Adapted form Caramel Potatoes
  • 1/2 cup melted butter
  • 1 1/2 cups cornmeal
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 baking soda
  • 1 cup buttermilk (can substitute 1 TBSP lemon juice or vinegar and enough regular milk to make one cup)
  • 3 eggs

Let your butter cool for a moment so that it won't scramble your eggs!  When it has cooled, whisk the melted butter, buttermilk, and eggs together.  Add in dry ingredients and stir well, but do not over mix.  Mixture will be a little lumpy.
Heat the oven to 400 degree.  Pour the mixture into a well greased 8x8 baking pan (9x9 may also be used for a thinner bread)
Bake 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Let cool for 10-15 minutes before cutting and serving.

<--- click the magic button for nutrition info and a printer friendly version!

Linking up at some of these great parties!

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